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Four companies given OK for .osaka

Kevin Murphy, February 28, 2012, Domain Registries

While GMO Registry announced yesterday that it had been given government approval to apply for the geo-gTLD .osaka, apparently it was not alone.

Four companies were given the same approval by the Osaka Prefecture, according to local gTLD consultancy UrbanBrain.

As well as GMO, letters of non-objection have been given to UrbanBrain parent company Interlink, BusinessRalliart, and Future Spirits, UrbanBrain’s Jacob Williams said.

Interlink is a Japanese ISP and domain registrar, Future Spirits is a hosting company, and BusinessRalliart is a technology company already linked to bids for .okinawa and .ryukyu.

Whether all four actually apply is another matter entirely — cash could be saved if the companies combine their efforts now or if some of the less cash-rich applicants withdraw.

NeuStar wins UrbanBrain .brand contract

Kevin Murphy, October 6, 2010, Domain Registries

NeuStar has become the preferred provider of registry services to UrbanBrain, a consultancy that hopes to launch “.brand” top-level domains with major Japanese companies.

The companies said in a press release:

Under the alliance, Neustar and UrbanBrain will provide brand owners with the expertise and support required to prepare and submit their applications to ICANN, and will provide all of the registry services necessary for brands to launch and operate their own Internet extensions.

NeuStar already operates the .biz and .us registries under contract with ICANN and the US government respectively, as well as providing back-end services for a number of other TLDs.

UrbanBrain is currently associated with a proposed bid for .site.

The only formally announced commercial .brand to date is .canon. Canon is working with GMO Registry, another Japanese firm.

UrbanBrain proposes first properly generic new gTLD

Japanese registry wannabe UrbanBrain will apply for .site under ICANN’s first round of new top-level domain applications.

Of all the registries to so far show their hands for the new TLD round, .site is probably the first that could properly be described as both new and “generic”.

UrbanBrain said the namespace will be targeted at “Internet users, hobbyists, and business owners”. A pretty generic constituency.

Also, the dotSiTE launch page currently contains a bullet-pointed list of three reasons why .site will indeed be as generic as they come.

The dotSiTE internet extension is full of possibilities.

* Optimize your SiTE with great keywords

* Some other text

* Another reason

All the other 100-odd new TLD applications to have been publicly disclosed to date address specific geographical, cultural or niche interest markets.

There are also two (for now) applications for .web, which I’m not counting as “new” gTLD applications because they’ve been on the table for over a decade.

UrbanBrain is affiliated with Japanese ISP Interlink, and registry-in-a-box venture RegistryASP.